Norwegian Cruise Line will sail a third ship in Alaska during the summer of 2013, as the Norwegian Sun will join the Jewel and Pearl.

Norwegian CEO Kevin Sheehan said Alaska’s reduction of the tax on cruise passengers was a factor.

“With the strides made by the state government, we felt the time was right to add a third ship in Alaska,” he said.

Kevin Sheehan, CEOSheehan also said there is demand for increased capacity in Alaska, and demand for “varied and unique cruises.” To introduce variation, Norwegian is offering land packages in combination with Norwegian Sun cruises.

Norwegian’s pre- and post-cruise tours will depart from Whittier, Alaska. Ranging in length from four to six days, the escorted tours feature two nights in Denali National Park, a stop at a sled dog musher’s house (on four- and five-night tours) and a ride on the Alaskan railroad.

Beginning May 20, 2013, the Norwegian Sun’s northbound itinerary departs Vancouver and will cruise the Inside Passage, Glacier Bay and Hubbard Glacier and make stops in Ketchikan, Skagway and Juneau.

On southbound itineraries from Whittier, the Sun will cruise the Inside Passage, Sawyer Glacier and Hubbard Glacier. It will stop in Ketchikan, Skagway, Juneau and Icy Strait Point.

The Norwegian Star will replace the Norwegian Sun in the Baltic in 2013, sailing nine-day cruises from Copenhagen, Denmark.

Norwegian’s summer 2013 cruises went on sale to the cruise line’s top-selling travel agents and past guests on Tuesday. The cruises will be available to everyone else on Thursday.

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